Discover Chemainus

Discover Chemainus

History and art on southern Vancouver Island

Located on Vancouver Island’s eastern shore, Chemainus is nestled between the ocean and the Island’s mountains.

Chemainus is renowned for the many professionally painted murals and sculptures beautifully depicting its history and culture. The town’s quaint streets are lined with small shops, galleries and restaurants, allowing visitors to explore the island’s finest pottery, antiques and collectibles.

Take a dip in Fuller Lake or Clark Beach for a relaxing day by the water.

Filled with artists and a vibrant energy and creativity, the town is anchored by the Chemainus Theatre, a star attraction featuring live, year-round plays and musicals.


  • Population of 3,900
  • World-famous for its outdoor gallery of murals, an attraction that saved the town after its natural resource sector
  • Home to the world’s first artificial reef for sinking a Boeing 737 for scuba divers. The aircraft rests on huge tripods under the water.
  • Chemainus was originally composed of many First Nations settlements


Chemainus’s climate is warm and temperate. Rainfall falls mostly in the winter, with relatively little rain in the summer.

Destination BC is developing a new campaign to promote hyper-local travel where residents are “tourists-in-their own hometown,” while practising the COVID-19 safety protocols as recommended by the B.C. Provincial Health Officer. Many B.C. parks are now open, and national parks were to open as of June 1.

(Check this website for current details on travel.)

Getting here

Vehicle: From Victoria, head north on the Trans-Canada Hwy/BC-1 N for about an 75 minutes. From Nanaimo, head south on Trans-Canada Hwy/BC-1 S for 30 minutes.

Ferry: BC Ferries offers services from Tsawwassen or Horseshoe Bay to Victoria at Swartz Bay and Nanaimo at Duke Point.

Flying: The closest airport option is Nanaimo Airport that includes services from West Jet, Air Canada, and Air North. Victoria International Airport is about an hour and 30-minute drive. Seaplanes from Harbour Air are also available for flights to either Nanaimo and Victoria.

Transit: Tofino Bus service is available from Victoria and Nanaimo to Chemainus. The Vancouver Island Connector is a coach service also available for Chemainus from Nanaimo and Victoria. BC Transit offers route 75 from Victoria to Chemainus as well.

For more visit WestCoastTraveller or Chemainus Valley Courier

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